How Faros AI Makes My Job Easier: A Developer's Story
As an engineer at an early-stage startup I wear a lot of different hats. Some days I focus on coding; on others, I focus on designing features and defining the work for our contractors. Read this post to learn more about how I leverage Faros AI to make my job easier.
December 7, 2022
A Day in My Life
As an engineer at an early-stage startup I wear a lot of different hats. Some days I focus on coding; on others, I focus on designing features and defining the work for our contractors. Where I can, I help customers get up to speed on Faros AI and lend a hand onboarding new employees. As time goes on, more and more of my time is spent tracking down answers.
Some of the questions that come up regularly are:
- What has the team been working on in the last month?
- What is going out in the release next week?
- What did I miss while I was gone?
- Why am I getting so many pagerduty alerts? Is this normal?
- What is too much time waiting for something to build?
Getting this Insight is Not Trivial
Without a connected platform like Faros AI, getting these answers involves some guess work and lots of time that I don’t have. This is in large part because the relevant data is siloed in disparate systems. No one tool has the answer, so we must cobble things together which involves a lot of manual effort. This quickly becomes redundant, boring work that is error prone. Let’s take the first two questions above as examples.
Going into a retro meeting, we often ask: “What did we work on?” Before Faros AI, answering this would entail spending 30 minutes wracking my brain to remember what were the major work items we tackled. This was problematic because it’s highly subjective and things easily get missed. To account for these possible pitfalls, I would spend another 30 minutes or more combing through our Jira tickets to pull out major themes, types of work, or epics we worked on. Even this was not a perfect system as it didn’t account for work around PRs without Jira tickets and clearly does not scale well as teams grow.
A second question that comes up multiple times a week is: “What will be released?” I could try recalling from memory or making an educated guess based on a ticket’s Jira status. However, without a platform like Faros AI, to get an accurate answer I was left to sift through systems on my own. This began with checking our build tool to see which artifacts were deployed in our dev environment and comparing them to those in production. Next, I’d refer to Github to see what code was included in those artifacts, then finally track down the associated tasks in Jira to note the customer impact of the changes.
How I Leverage Faros AI
With Faros AI, I have the opportunity to answer these questions with data. Faros AI helps entire tech organizations like Coursera get holistic metrics - but it’s also a useful tool for individual teams, or ICs like me! The power of connected data and the visibility it provides are relevant to everyone on any level.
Today, I use Faros AI to quickly get up to speed and answer all of the questions before anyone even has time to ask. In a single view I can see:
- What have we worked on?
- What things will be released and what will the impact be?
The dashboard breaks out the work by type and epic, highlights any incidents, and includes an overview of how the work contributed to larger epics. I can also see a list of the most active tickets and PRs, a list of all the features and services getting shipped.
The insights above are only possible because Faros AI connects all your data systems.
Faros AI Scales With You
The above few examples are just the beginning. Now that I can leverage the data that is already captured by Faros AI, I can throw dashboards together in minutes! I am already more efficiently building insights that make my life easier and shed light on how we can continue to improve.
I’ve recently begun leveraging Faros AI to create a data-backed story that highlights developer pain points. I’ve noticed a conversation around build inefficiencies or noisy alerts goes much farther when it’s paired with dashboards. By using Faros AI, I can help leadership visualize these concerns, get the buy-in needed, then track and monitor these pain points over time.
This chart highlights how policy changes impacted our on call experience.
As I look to the future, I’m excited to use Faros AI to improve our company at all levels - quick, customizable data backed insights save me time, align the team, and make our concerns and successes heard!
The power of Faros AI comes from its flexibility; it works for all types of data, all types of questions, all types of roles. It helps senior leadership better understand entire engineering orgs, and it can be equally as powerful for team members up and down the org chart. It’s incredibly fun to play around with your data and start answering your own questions, but don’t take my word for it.
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